India to sue Nestlé for nearly $100 million over Maggi scandal

August 14, 2015

The Indian government has filed a lawsuit for illegal business practices against Maggi’s parent company Nestlé after the recent instant noodle ban.

Earlier this year Indian food safety regulator Uttar Pradesh allegedly found traces of MSG and excessive levels of lead in Maggi instant noodle packets.

The scandal that followed has made global headlines and led to other countries, including Australia, banning the popular products.

Now the Indian government is suing the manufacturer for ‘unfair trading practices’ to the tune of nearly US $100 million. The lawsuit was filed this week in the National Consumer Disputes Redressal Commission (NCDRC), India’s highest consumer court, despite the fact that multiple independent lab tests ordered by Nestlé found no MSG or harmful levels of lead.

“Our complaint is over their unfair trade practices and the court will now issue them notices to hear their response,” said Additional Secretary at the Ministry of Consumer Affairs, G Gurcharan.

Nestlé yet to receive official notice

According to a spokesperson from Nestlé’s Indian branch, the company has so far received no official notice about the complaint.

“We shall be able to provide substantive response after we receive the official papers,” said Himanshu Manglik.

The Indian scandal is said to have already cost Maggi more than US $185 million in product and brand losses and before the scandal, the country was spending more than US $240 million annually on the noodles.